Bookends and Cultural Partner Events

Register now for a full week of Bookend events – most are free! – some charge admission.

Bookends and Cultural Partner Events

8:30am EST

September 28, 2020

Children / Comics / International

Tune in for the livestream. The Brooklyn Book Festival joins the Reading is Magic Festival for a celebration of the power of an image to tell stories, to express identity and to be a tool for activism whether in comics, picture books or painted large on the side of a building. Join three young voices talking about why a picture for them tells more than a thousand words.  With Toronto based comic writer and critic Ardo Omer, New York based mural artist and picture book illustrator Katie Yamasaki and comic-focused computer art student Caitlyn Bannatyne.

7:30pm EST

September 28, 2020

Fiction / Non-Fiction / Poetry

Discover your next favorite New York reading series! The Reading Series of New York collective is excited to feature readers from five of New York’s finest reading series. Each curator will introduce a writer who epitomizes the spirit of their series – featuring Rosamond S. King (Women Writers in Bloom Poetry Salon), Stacie Evans (Big Words, etc.), Malcolm Tariq (Maracuyá Peach Reading Series), I.S. Jones (Angry Reading Series), Marwa Helal (Soul Sister Revue), and Rachel Eliza Griffiths (First Person Plural Reading Series)!

September 28, 2020

7:30pm

7:30pm EST

September 28, 2020

Children / Fiction / Poetry

The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture presents readings by Rio Cortez, poet, children’s book author, and manager/creative coordinator of The Schomburg Shop, Parneisha Jones, and writer, Director, Northwestern University Press. OlaRonke Akinmowo, Founder, Free Black Women’s Library. Moderated by Novella Ford, Associate Director Public Programs and Exhibitions, Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture.

September 28, 2020

7:30pm

8:00pm EST

September 28, 2020

Comics

Readings of graphic novels and comics, with images, presented by the authors Glynnis Fawkes (Charlotte Bronte Before Jane Eyre), Shary Flenniken (Trots and Bonnie), Mikki Kendall (Amazons, Abolitionists, and Activists), Sophie Yanow (The Contradictions), and more. Hosted by R. Sikoryak (Constitution Illustrated). 

September 28, 2020

8:00pm

8:00pm EST

September 28, 2020

Non-Fiction

Presented by TOPPLE Books. Melissa Faliveno’s Tomboyland navigates the mysterious terrain of androgyny and bisexuality, womanhood and rage, religion and myth, loneliness and love. Ultimately, she asks what it means to live in the spaces between and what it means to come home. In An American Covenant: A Story of Women, Mysticism, and the Making of Modern America, Lucile Scott shares the history of five female mystic leaders over three centuries for whom hope, liberation, and understanding are the foundation for living. Moderated by BRIC TV Chief Correspondent, Brian Vines, the conversation will land in contemporary American culture. 

September 28, 2020

8:00pm

3:00pm EST

September 29, 2020

Non-Fiction

In a conversation that promises to span topics as cosmic as outer space, exoplanets, and black holes, and as earthbound as writing, gender politics, memoir, and educational YouTube — join the New York Times in conversation with two of today’s leading astrophysicists. Times Book Review writer and editor Gal Beckerman will moderate the discussion with Sara Seager — MIT astrophysicist, and author of a deeply felt memoir on loss and the unexpected solace of exoplanetary exploration — and Becky Smethurst, Oxford professor, popular astrophysics YouTuber, and author of a new illustrated book bringing us the mysteries of the cosmos in a down-to-earth medium.

September 29, 2020

3:00pm

7:00pm EST

September 29, 2020

Fiction / Non-Fiction

LIC Reading Series presents an evening of brief readings and a lively panel discussion with Marie-Helene Bertino (Parakeet), Jennifer Croft (Homesick; translator, Flights), and Maaza Mengiste (The Shadow King). Join us for an awesome time with three amazing women who write novels, stories, essays, memoir, AND translate award-winning literature! We are proud to be based in Queens, and as always, our event will also feature stories about Queens from our guest writers and Queens-based prizes for the audience.

September 29, 2020

7:00pm

7:00pm EST

September 29, 2020

Fiction / International

Join The New Republic for a livestream of its Salon book series featuring Yaa Gyasi, author and Rumaan Alam, TNR contributor as they talk Transcendent Kingdom, Gyasi’s new novel. Yaa Gyasi’s stunning follow-up to her acclaimed national best seller Homegoing is a powerful, raw, intimate, deeply layered novel about a Ghanaian family in Alabama. 

7:30pm EST

September 29, 2020

Fiction

Pulitzer Prize-winning author Marilynne Robinson joins us for the launch of her new novel, Jack, in conversation with Esmé Weijun Wang. All ticket holders will receive a hardcover copy of the book with a signed bookplate that will ship separately.

September 29, 2020

7:30pm

1:00pm EST

September 30, 2020

Fiction

Each season the Brooklyn Book Festival selects a few debut authors whose books we think shouldn’t be missed.  This year’s debut book picks include: The New Wilderness – Diane CookLike A Bird – Fariha RóisínMy Mother’s House – Francesca Momplaisir, What’s Left of Me Is Yours – Stephanie Scott, Whiteout ConditionsTariq ShahSharks In the TIme of Saviors-Kawai Strong Washburn. Meet these debut authors, who will each read a selection from their book.

September 30, 2020

1:00pm

1:00pm EST

September 30, 2020

Children / Comics

Join R.L. Stine, one of America’s best-selling children’s authors in history (The Goosebumps series and Fear Street) and Tim Jacobus, an American artist, illustrator and video games designer best known for illustrating the covers for nearly 100 books in the R. L. Stine’s Goosebumps series, as they talk about the stories they tell, their collaborative imagination, and share some secrets behind some original Goosebumps’ covers!  R.L. Stine’s latest book in the Goosebumps series is My Friend Slappy (Goosebumps SlappyWorld #12).

3:00pm EST

September 30, 2020

Non-Fiction

It gets better — but the path to joy is never straight. From seeing to being, three Black Queer authors: George M. Johnson (All Boy’s Aren’t Blue), Jamal Jordan (Queer Love in Color) and Darnell L. Moore (No Ashes in the Fire: Coming of Age Black & Free in America) share their journey to fully realizing their Queer Black Selves and living their versions of joy. Moderated by BRIC-TV Chief Correspondent Brian Vines.

September 30, 2020

3:00pm

6:00pm EST

September 30, 2020

International

ISSUE streams a performance from Heroes Are Gang Leaders, a literary free jazz ensemble of writers, artists and musicians founded in 2014 as a tribute to late poet, activist and jazz critic Amiri Baraka. The performance features an expansive fourteen-member band as well as multiple embedded solos and ensemble formations.

The performance will take place at ISSUE’s 22 Boerum Theater, followed by a discussion focusing on the ways in which the boundaries between units of sound and units of meaning are eliminated in order to create improvisational literature.

6:30pm EST

September 30, 2020

Fiction / Non-Fiction

The Center for Black Literature at Medgar Evers College, CUNY, will host a literary salon with Dr. Imani Perry, author of six books, including most recently Breathe: A Letter to My Sons and  Looking for Lorraine: The Radiant and Radical Life of Lorraine Hansberry, which received the PEN/Bograd Weld Award for Biography. Perry is Hughes-Rogers Professor of African American Studies at Princeton University. Dr. Perry will be joined in conversation with Dr. Brenda M. Greene, executive director and founder of Center for Black Literature.

September 30, 2020

6:30pm

7:00pm EST

September 30, 2020

Fiction

Join The Offing, PANK, and The Rumpus for an inspiring evening of readings and conversation! Featuring Jody Chan, Golden, Marlin M. Jenkins, Raven Leilani, Monica Prince, and Erika T. Wurth and co-hosted by Jessica Fischoff, Marisa Siegel, and Mimi Wong. This event is brought to you with thanks to our friends at Books Are Magic, and is an official 2020 Brooklyn Book Festival Bookend event.

7:00pm EST

September 30, 2020

Fiction

Karen Russell’s Sleep Donation launch with Carmen Maria Machado. For the first time in paperback, a haunting novella from the uncannily imaginative author of the national bestsellers Swamplandia! and Orange World: the story of a deadly insomnia epidemic and the lengths one woman will go to to fight it.  In conversation with Carmen Maria Machado, author of Her Body and Other Parties and In the Dream House!  TICKETS are $22 for a bundle including a SIGNED copy of the book shipped anywhere in the U.S. for FREE, or $5 just for an event ticket.

7:00pm EST

September 30, 2020

Non-Fiction

Can it happen here? Is it happening here? The “F” word–fascism. We have witnessed a program of blatant white supremacy and male supremacy, and xenophobic racism toward immigrants. Institutional norms have been steamrolled. Crude displays of American jingoism, draconian moves to criminalize and suppress dissent, as in Portland. What are the lessons of history, and in this unprecedented situation what are the appropriate forms of action. That is the topic of this panel.

Jason Stanley is a philosopher at Yale. His book “How Fascism Works: The Politics of Us Against Them” sets out essential features and dynamics of fascism. Andy Zee is a co-initiator of RefuseFascism and spokesperson for Revolution Books. He makes the case that we are now being ruled by a fascist regime.

September 30, 2020

7:00pm

7:30pm EST

September 30, 2020

Poetry

Greenlight highlights independent presses Four Way Books and Nightboat Books in an evening of readings featuring three authors from each press! Four Way authors Yona Harvey, Ricardo Alberto Maldonado, and Jeffrey Harrison, and Nightboat authors Aaron Shurin, Aditi Machado, and Carlos Lara come together to share and celebrate their latest collections of poetry.

September 30, 2020

7:30pm

7:30pm EST

September 30, 2020

Fiction

“Coming & Going” Fellows from Lambda Literary have teamed up with nonfiction series No, YOU Tell It! for a special evening of queer storytelling with a twist. Four curated storytellers have worked together to develop their true tales inspired by the theme “Coming & Going” on the page. Watch as they swap and present each other’s stories on the virtual stage. Plus, a chance to win fun literary prizes from The Astoria Bookshop!

Storytellers: Nancy Agabian, Calvin Cato, Nicole Shawan Junior, and Charlotte Marchant

September 30, 2020

7:30pm

7:45am EST

October 1, 2020

Poetry

Join the Gowanus Dredgers Canoe Club for our fourth annual dawn reading in canoes on the Gowanus Canal! This year, in an event that will be broadcast live, readers in canoes will share the poetry of Brooklyn poet Marianne Moore. Readers should contact [email protected] in advance to select readings. Readers arrive at Gowanus Dredgers boathouse at 165 2nd Street, Brooklyn, at 7 a.m. Masked audience invited to take up a distanced spot on the historic Carroll Street Bridge at 7:45 a.m. Support from Gowanus Souvenir Shop.

October 1, 2020

7:45am

1:00pm EST

October 1, 2020

Non-Fiction

Written by New York Times journalists, the now best-selling Finish the Fight captures untold stories in the fight for women’s right to vote, particularly the underrepresented but vital voices of BIPOC and queer activists. The Times is thrilled to join the Brooklyn Book Festival to discuss the genesis, creation, and impact of this recent release. Veronica Chambers, the primary author and creator of the book, along with key contributor Sandra Garcia, will join this conversation moderated by Times Culture editor and gender reporter Maya Salam.

1:00pm EST

October 1, 2020

Non-Fiction

How is technology changing our daily lives? And how may we change it for the better? Three recent books provide fascinating answers to these questions. Charlton McIlwain’s Black Software: The Internet & Racial Justice, From the AfroNet to Black Lives Matter, offers a compelling history and theory of how many forms of bias and subordination degraded online life, and how they can be combated. Joanne McNeil’s Lurking: How a Person Became a User, identifies the primary (if sometimes contradictory) concerns of people online: searching, safety, privacy, identity, community, anonymity, and visibility. And Frank Pasquale’s New Laws of Robotics: Defending Human Expertise in the Age of AI, offers an inspiring vision of technological progress, in which human capacities and expertise are the irreplaceable center of an inclusive economy. Moderated by Christina Mulligan, Brooklyn Law School, Vice Dean Professor of Law: Internet Law & Intellectual Property

7:00pm EST

October 1, 2020

Fiction / Non-Fiction

Join Latinx in Publishing’s Zakiya Jamal as she leads a dynamic conversation with five acclaimed writers across all genres to discuss their process, the future, and how, in their writing, they have broken free or reshaped the various Latinx stereotypes portrayed in media. Authors include: Veronica Chambers (Shirley Chisholm is a Verb!), Roy G. Guzman (Catrachos), Roberto Lovato (Unforgetting: A Memoir of Family, Migration, Gangs and Revolution in the Americas), Juli Delgado Lopera (Fiebre Tropical: A Novel) and Claribel Ortega (Ghost Squad).

7:00pm EST

October 1, 2020

Non-Fiction

In a time when information moves at faster speeds than ever before, it’s critical that books about the most important events of the day are nurtured, championed, and made widely available. Join staff and authors from the university press community to discuss how they strive to elevate disciplines, subjects, and authors that bring new perspectives, ideas, and voices to readers around the globe. This event is part of the fall programming for University Press Week (November 9-15), which this year has the theme of “Raise UP.”

Panelists Include: Fred Nachbaur, Director, Fordham University Press, Pamela Lewis, Author, Teaching While Black: A New Voice on Race and Education in New York City, Ilene Kalish, Executive Editor, NYU Press, Jane Ward, Author, The Tragedy of Heterosexuality, Eric Schwartz, Editorial Director, Columbia University Press, Lance M. Freeman, Author, A Haven and a Hell: The Ghetto in Black America 

7:00pm EST

October 1, 2020

Poetry

The Alice Austen House located on the North Shore of Staten Island is home to both photographers, performers and writers. For this year’s festival we are presenting readings from 5 Staten Island poets who have been participating in an ongoing virtual Humanities New York, Audre Lorde reading and discussion series hosted by the Alice Austen House. Poets in order of appearance: Thomas Fucaloro, Fern Metcalf, Margaret Chase, Vanessa-Renee Mical and M.A. Dennis.

October 1, 2020

7:00pm

7:30pm EST

October 1, 2020

Fiction / International

Translators Jennifer Croft and Sam Bett join Ferrante translator Ann Goldstein to discuss the increasingly visible role of translation in contemporary literary culture, moderated by Europa editor Michael Reynolds.

7:30pm EST

October 1, 2020

Non-Fiction

As the places and people most affected by the climate change crisis face existential threat, freeing environmental writing from the gaze of the “Lone Enraptured Male” (London Review of Books) is crucial. Kerri Arsenault, Meehan Crist, Bathsheba Demuth, John Freeman, Emily Raboteau, and Meera Subramanian will consider the formal, structural elements environmental writers can bring to storytelling, how to handle or tell stories that support political stances, and examine the stories out there that can foster a better understanding of our environmental crisis. This event is co-sponsored by Orion magazine and the National Book Critics Circle. 

October 1, 2020

7:30pm

10:00pm EST

October 1, 2020

Fiction

World Builders of the Past and Future, Ilube Nommo Award–winning author Tochi Onyebuchi (Riot Baby) and #1 NYT bestselling author Christopher Paolini (To Sleep in a Sea of Stars) team up for a wide-ranging discussion about their newest books, world building in science fiction and fantasy, writing for a YA and an adult audience, and the fun of nerd culture in general. Tochi Onyebuchi is the author of Beasts Made of Night, its sequel Crown of Thunder, War Girls. Christopher Paolini is the author of the international bestsellers Eragon, Eldest, Brisingr, and Inheritance, as well as The Fork, the Witch, and the Worm. Moderated by Christina Orlando. Presented with the 370 🅙 Project, NYU.

October 1, 2020

10:00pm

9:00am EST

October 2, 2020

Fiction / International / YA

Join not one, but two Children’s Laureates in an all-star international celebration of books and reading with the always brilliant Cressida Cowell from the UK and the superb Jason Reynolds from the USA! Cressida and Jason chat to Sunday Times children’s book critic Nicolette Jones about their roles as UK Waterstones Children’s Laureate and US National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature respectively. They celebrate the joys of reading and writing on both sides of the Atlantic – and the good that can come from the magic of reading when that magic is available to everyone. This event will be followed by a live Q&A. Presented with Reading is Magic Festival.

1:00pm EST

October 2, 2020

Non-Fiction

For most of our history the story has gone that white Southerners were racists while white Northerners were not. Today that myth is largely dismantled, thanks in part to three historians whose books lay bare the pernicious and widespread racism up north, and lift up the leaders and movements fighting these systems. Brian Purnell (Fighting Jim Crow in the County of Kings), Clarence Taylor (Fight the Power: African Americans and the Long History of Police Brutality in NYC) and Jeanne Theoharis (A More Beautiful and Terrible History: The Uses and Misuses of Civil Rights History) join the Brooklyn Historical Society for a conversation about a New York history that is, thankfully, no longer hidden.

4:00pm EST

October 2, 2020

Children / Fiction / Non-Fiction

Brooklyn Book Bodega Story Time Walking Tour 

Stroll with us through Downtown Brooklyn while learning some of the amazing history of the neighborhood through story. We will read about Ida B. Wells and the Duffield Houses on Abolitionist Place. Then learn about our nonprofit organization,  the term “bodega,” and read a final book with us with author Louie Chin, Bodega Cat. Brooklyn Book Bodega’s mission is to increase the number of 100+ book homes for kids 0-18 in NYC.

7:00pm EST

October 2, 2020

Poetry

Queens poets perform an exquisite corpse that reckons with the pandemic and more. Participants include Nadia Q. Ahmad, Pichchenda Bao, Nana Ekua Brew-Hammond, Jared Harél, Abeer Y. Hoque, Joseph O. Legaspi, Rob Ostrom, and KC Trommer.

October 2, 2020

7:00pm

7:00pm EST

October 2, 2020

Fiction

In collaboration with AAWW and Kundiman, Kaya Press brings novelist Ed Lin and pioneering YA author Marie Myung-Ok Lee (Finding My Voice) together to celebrate the release of Ed Lin’s YA debut, David Tung Can’t Have A Girlfriend Until He Gets Into An Ivy League College. Moderated by Ruth Minah Buchwald, this event will dig into the pitfalls of the “model minority” myth and how to challenge it, and celebrate coming-of-age in the Asian American diaspora while navigating race, class, love, and the confusing expectations of immigrant parents.

October 2, 2020

7:00pm

7:30pm EST

October 2, 2020

Non-Fiction / Performance

Featuring A Public Space, Akashic Books, Archipelago Books, BOMB Magazine, Enchanted Lion, Ig Publishing, One Story, Radix Media, Restless Books, Turtle Point Press, and Ugly Duckling Presse Co-hosted by the Community of Literary Magazines and Presses (CLMP). The Brooklyn Book Festival goes virtual this year, and Greenlight’s traditional Brooklyn Indie Party (ten years and counting) must go online as well! On the Friday night before BKBF, Greenlight once again partners with CLMP, as well as some of Brooklyn’s best independent book and magazine publishers, to throw a Brooklyn-sized party celebrating the spirit of literary independence in Brooklyn with an all-star revue! Each of tonight’s presses will have an editor or publisher introducing a featured author, highlighting great indie talents including Megan Cummins, Adam Smyer, Ivan Vladislavić, Kim McLarin, Jenzo DuQue, JinJin Xu, Rivka Galchen, Grace Schulman, Zahra Patterson, and more.  All ticket proceeds will be distributed evenly among tonight’s presses, making this a great way to support our beloved Brooklyn indie community while discovering new talents and seeing old friends.  Join us with the drink of your choice in hand to kick off the Brooklyn Book Festival weekend!

October 2, 2020

7:30pm

1:00pm EST

October 5, 2020

Children / Fiction

TUI T. SUTHERLAND is the author of the New York Times and USA Today bestselling Wings of Fire series, the Menagerie trilogy, and the Pet Trouble series, as well as a contributing author to the bestselling Spirit Animals and Seekers series (as part of the Erin Hunter team). Join her as she reads from her just released new book, the 14th in the Wings of Fire series!

1:00pm EST

October 5, 2020

Poetry

Poet and activist Sonia Sanchez and Kevin Young (editor of African American Poetry: 250 Years of Struggle & Song, October 2020) will read from their work, followed by a discussion.

6:00pm EST

October 5, 2020

Non-Fiction

Kimberly Drew, arts writer, curator, and activist, This Is What I Know About Art, in conversation with celebrated photographer, artist, curator and author, Deborah Willis talking about art as both a reflection on society and an opportunity to change society and make inclusive space for artists. Moderated by Naomi Extra, scholar, poet and writer.

6:00pm EST

October 5, 2020

Fiction / International

There are moments in the lives of countries and generations when the future appears to burn especially bright with hope and youthful promise. But what happens when dreams sour, when pioneering generations lurch into middle-age? Daniel Galera’s Twenty After Midnight follows a circle of literary provocateurs whose webzine revolutionized the internet and shook up Brazilian culture at the dawn of the new millennium. Now, 15 years later, they are left to reckon with death, disappointment, and a feeling of impending doom. Tsitsi Dangarembga’s This Mournable Body, shortlisted for the 2020 Booker Prize, continues to follow the travails of Tambu, the Zimbabwean protagonist of Dangarembga’s classic 1980s novel, Nervous Conditions. Tambu, raised in colonial Rhodesia, is now a single woman navigating the obstacles of independent Harare, the ideals of the War of Liberation a distant memory. Both novels poignantly ask, Where have we gone wrong? Moderated by Anderson Tepper.

7:00pm EST

October 5, 2020

Poetry

Sibling Rivalry Press hosts a reading to celebrate the release of Jubi Arriola-Headley’s debut collection of poetry, original kink, with fellow poets L. Lamar Wilson, author of Sacrilegion; Malcolm Tariq, author of Heed the Hollow; and Dustin Pearson, author of Millennial Roost and A Family Is a House. The poets will read from their and others’ work, and reflect on how their writing practice interrogates/troubles/queers conventional notions of Black masculinity.

7:00pm EST

October 5, 2020

Comics / Non-Fiction

Leslie Stein‘s graphic memoir I Know You Rider takes place over the 12 month period surrounding an abortion, tackling the complex subject of reproductive choice —and choice more generally — candidly and philosophically. Adrian Tomine’s The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Cartoonist is a comedic memoir about fandom, fame, and other embarrassments from the life of the New York Times bestselling author of Killing and Dying. Journalist and editor Nicole Rudick speaks to Stein and Tomine about their comics. 

7:30pm EST

October 5, 2020

Non-Fiction

An artful and uplifting documentary on the life of the legendary storyteller and Nobel prize-winner. From her childhood in Lorain, OH to ’70s-era book tours with Muhammad Ali, from the front lines with Angela Davis to her riverfront writing room, Toni Morrison reflects on race, America, and the human condition as seen through the prism of her work. The film includes appearances by Hilton Als, Angela Davis, Fran Lebowitz, Walter Mosley, Sonia Sanchez and Oprah Winfrey. The screening will be followed by a talk-back with director, Timothy Greenfield-Sanders.

What was YOUR Top Festival Moment?

What moments from this year’s Brooklyn Book Festival still get your smiling, ear to ear, when you think back to that fantastic weekend? Here are a few of our memorable moments.